Academic journal article Science Scope

Using Medical Headlines to Meet the NGSS Goals

Academic journal article Science Scope

Using Medical Headlines to Meet the NGSS Goals

Article excerpt

Ebola, enterovirus D68, sports concussions, and the debate about vaccinations are all medical topics that have recently been making waves in the news. These health threats, along with more commonly discussed conditions (asthma, cancer, diabetes, heart attacks) and lesser-known genetic diseases, are increasingly on the minds of the nation's middle school students. Your students' health concerns can make excellent springboards for classroom studies--especially for lessons related to Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) MS-LS1: From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes and MS-LS3: Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits.

This issue of Science Scope offers a broad collection of NGSS-aligned articles about human health and biomedical engineering. In choosing them, we specifically looked for activities that do not emphasize the study of individual organs of the human body; we chose instead to present lessons designed to lead students to the concept that "the body is a system of multiple interacting subsystems" that "are specialized for particular body functions" (NGSS Lead States 2013). These articles discuss a variety of medical interventions such as designing bone implants, repairing clogged arteries, simulating breast tissue fabrication, and understanding sickle cell disease. …

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